The Rogue Network – Binary

binary-ep-cover_RingMasterReview

If like us you were taken by their debut EP of 2015 and the two track single last year which it spawned, you will be pleased to know that The Rogue Network has taken things on their part and our attraction to another level with Binary. The four-track EP is another slice of the band’s blues fuelled rock ‘n’ roll yet revealing a broader canvas of sound as catchy as it is adventurous.

The band, taking inspirations from seventies nurtured blues/soul, has increasingly grown into a compelling proposition since emerging in 2015. Led by vocalist/guitarist Gerallt Williams, The Rogue Network re-energised an already growing interest and support for the band’s sound and live presence with the Milk and Honey/Lowland City single in 2016, a tantalising melody rich affair now eclipsed by the Binary EP.

From the first eager throes of opener Operator, band and release has ears and attention locked in. A tasty groove makes first contact, grumbling pulsating electronics and bassline in close attention as sonic enterprise brews around them. With a controlled easy going gait, the song soon eagerly strolls through ears, harmonies and fiery grooves in turn wrapping the potent tones of Williams. There is feistiness to the track which infests every aspect, giving it a raw tempestuous texture which never erupts but adds weight to the infectious funk clad encounter.

It is a fine, seriously catchy start quickly backed up by the melodically charmed Venodotia. There is a Paul McCartney-esque feel to the song, its pop prowess Wings hinting as picturesque lyrics and suggestive melodies embrace and inspire the imagination while Hammond spiced keys add extra colour. It is easy to get lost in its lure, its infectious chorus and a refreshing canter especially though it is soon overshadowed by the EP’s best track.

Ruby is pure enslavement, a slice of pop ‘n’ roll which chains appetite and lust as soon as its opening drama reveals the salaciously seductive bait of piano and the sinister charm of atmospheric melody. Demanding to be a single, the track dances like a mischievous temptress with body and spirit, its spicy blues flirtation alone irresistible around a chorus which has vocal chords dancing without inhibition.

The EP is concluded by Pam Fi, a Welsh sung proposal with rumbling bass and crisp beats clad in fiery melodies as wiry grooves infest the imagination. It is, as now expected, an inescapably catchy tempting bringing the release to a fine conclusion, quickly defusing the niggle of not knowing what its lyrical heart is sharing.

The Rogue Network have really hit their stride in songwriting and sound, Binary relishing another step in craft and boldness which if it continues suggests even bigger exciting things ahead.

The Binary EP is out now across most online stores.

https://twitter.com/THEROGUENETWORK   https://www.facebook.com/theroguenetwork/

Pete RingMaster 18/01/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Weaves and carousels with Demi The Daredevil

demi-the-daredevil_RingMasterReview

It is fair to say that bands which bring a diversity of imagination and sound together stand out from the thick music crowd more than most and that is exactly what is happening with Demi The Daredevil. Since forming in 2006, the Texan outfit has explored their art rock natured sound without allowing it boundaries, persistently luring attention from fans and media alike to now knock on global awareness. We recently had the chance to do our own exploration of the band with one of its founders Jeff Azar to look at the beginnings of Demi The Daredevil, that journey through sound and imagination, their latest release and much more…

Hello, many thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to the bands beginnings?

My name is Jeff Azar from an Art Rock/Dark Theater band called Demi the Daredevil. It all started in our hometown El Paso; El Chuco as some like to say. Jovan (RIP) and Marc started playing guitar together, and I was introduced to them by a mutual friend. I started off on the drums in this band.

Were you involved in other bands before Demi the Daredevil? If so what influence did those experiences have on what you are doing now?

Marc is in a few other bands. I jammed with some people sometimes. I guess they helped me realize what direction I did NOT want to go in.

What inspired the band name?

Demi is short for demigod, which is a half man half god. Kinda like a Hercules type.

Not sure about Daredevil. Marc and Jovan chose Demi the Daredevil over The Rootbeer KamiKazis.

Was there any specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

No, at least it was more intuitive rather than a logical idea behind what we were doing. When we first started, Jovan was inspiring from random things like film scores or TV show theme songs or video game music and we punk rocked those out. We didn’t have too much of an audience in mind, we just wanted to make loud fast melodic music.

When my brother came into the mix later down the road, I thought we’d have two ideas: classical music merged with the pop world and the world of movie acting/very obvious themed songs. Currently, the main goal is to have 1) good chord progressions 2) good melodies 3) and killer grooves. Besides that, there is no one idea musically, and as far as the lyrics go, I’m speaking to those who struggle with mental health.

Do the same things still drive the band when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

That’s a good question. At first it was the pure fun of playing and analyzing music, with no thought of an audience. Then the drive became to be a critical success. Now, the drive seems to be connecting with kindreds, with like minds. Wanting a sense of community is the drive.

dtd_RingMasterReviewSince your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved?

This band has had a lot of style changes. There have been phases, which might have made it hard to pinpoint an audience. But it was a necessary exploration…. Anyway, at first it was balls out punk rock or power pop. Then during a Beatles phase it became more reserved and softer. When my brother Thomas came into the mix, it became very Broadwayesque, because he’s a classically trained pianist and likes Broadway styled melodies.  Now, there don’t seem to be rules. As long as the songs are accessible, emotional, and will stand the test of time at least for a little while, we can inspire from soft rock, power pop, classical, funk, dark cabaret, etc…

It has been more of an organic movement of sound rather than you deliberately trying new things?

It’s always been an organic movement of sound. At every point in the history of this band we’ve just dished out what we were taking in at the time. For me it’s intuitive writing in that I take in a bunch of impressions, and then somehow something is synthesized from all those impressions.

Presumably across the band there is a wide range of inspirations; are there any in particular which have impacted not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

Yes. You’re right about there being such a wide range of influencers. I’ve obsessed over bands during each stage…And can’t list them all. But, even though I’m ashamed to keep bringing up this contemporary band that only in the last year has been the biggest personal influence, Twenty One Pilots has had a major impact on my personal approach. I had similar subject matter to Tyler lyrically; he just said it better with zero pretence. He got me to get more sober, gave me faith in making songs that don’t have to be master crafted mega hits, just as long as they are good and accessible. They made me go the distance with grooves, and incorporate all these intricate rudiments I learned in drum line. And they created online community of a certain type of fan with a very particular identity which I’d like to reach too. The live show energy; I could go on. Please stop me.

Is there a regular process to the songwriting within the band?

For me, I need to start with a timeless and emotional chord progression…Or at least a variation of one.  That is most important to me. I try out syncopated rhythms with the core instruments. Melody then is experimented with. Previously written poetry is put more into lyric and song form. Recording programs help with happy accidents. There is a long phase of punching the song up after the main idea is there…So many bases to cover.

Where do the biggest inspirations to your lyrical side come from?

Lyric inspiration starts from what I think is a big realization or feeling.

I then take months to get a more bird’s eye view on it and to say it better than when I tried to describe it initially.

Can you give us some background to your latest release?

A lot of the lyrics for it were written in strange places, like an attic on the UT campus during my last summer of school there, a couple psych hospitals(a lot of time to reflect there), and in a tee pee (which I needed to live in to save money for marketing). The band was in flux, and our producer lived in New York. So it took a long time to coordinate with our producer long distance, which left me a lot of time to treat the songs like Frankenstein until they were the best they could be.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind it and its songs.dtd-art_RingMasterReview

The EP is called Secret Schizoid. The schizoid, defined by a psychologist Rollo May, is someone unable to feel, or to have close connection with others. They are out of touch with themselves. So these tracks are tracking that recovering the self process and piecing it back together.

Are you a band which goes into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to leave plenty of room for development as you record?

Definitely a band that goes into the studio with songs more in their finished state. Unless a group of musicians are dedicating enough time with each other to make magic happen going into the studio without set ideas seems like a nightmare. Plus we really just need to record live drums in the studio. The rest can be tracked at home.

 Tell us about the live side to the band?

We’re starting to prep for the live shows and trying to make them theatrical, in the sense that we we’re creating little inner dialogue scenes with voices on the back tracks, or I should say monologue scenes because they are like schizophrenic voices, in between songs…And making it engaging with the audience. We want people to feel like they are part of the inner turmoil.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it? Are there still the opportunities to make a mark?

Yes, there are opportunities to break through; the key is knowing what kind of person your fan is and send them personal messages. Build relationships. Also learning how to using social media to reach them. Facebook offers a really useful audience insights tool to learn more about your fans, and a power tool editor to advertise correctly.  In terms of playing live shows to regional fans when you don’t have money or resources to book nation or worldwide tours, promoting your shows to potential fans in whatever area will make it more worth your while. No industry ppl who can take you to the next level will mess with you without fans, and you can’t leverage anyone in the industry without fans.

You touched on social media there, how has it impacted impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

At first, the social media made us feel insecure because we just got crickets. After understanding how to use it (to spread your music to people who are care about that kind of music), it’s a free marketing tool. You have to learn how to use it and adapt. If you want to get signed to a company, you need to prove you have engagement from a Fan-base because that is in our control now. If you don’t care about getting signed you still need to use social media to have a Fan-base. You can play a show to ten people, two whom really likes you, or you can reach 8,000 people by $20 to market a live performance online for example.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add for the readers?

Thank you for asking good questions! Yes, admit insanity, embrace your humanity.

If you are plagued with self-doubt, are conflict ridden, and someone who asks existential questions listen to our Secret Schizoid EP 🙂

http://www.demithedaredevil.com/    https://www.facebook.com/demithedaredevil/   https://twitter.com/demidaredevil

The RingMaster Review 13/01/2017

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Scarlet Fantastic – Beyond Pluto EP

scarlet-fantastic-beyond-pluto-art_RingMasterReview

Following the release this past June of the well-received album Reverie, British artist Scarlet Fantastic is poised to light the skies with the Beyond Pluto EP. With its title track taken from that recent album, the EP brings new encounters and remixes to the celestial hug of its lead track, eighties pop spice fuelling all in what is a warm and charming proposal.

Scarlet Fantastic is Maggie K de Monde, an artist whose musical work spans over 4 decades and has enjoyed chart success in the ’80s with her bands Swans Way (Soul Train) and in turn Scarlet Fantastic (No Memory). Over the years she has worked and collaborated among a great many with the likes of Mike Thorne, Crabbi from Pop Will Eat Itself, ‘Hifi’ Sean Dickson of the Soup Dragons), and Martin Watkins from Marc Almond’s band and appeared on shows such as Top of the Pops, The Tube, The Old Grey Whistle Test, The Roxy, No Limit, and MTV.

There is much more to the creative history of Maggie which has been highlighted again by the release of Reveries and now the Beyond Pluto EP. The title track of the latter opens up her new proposition and quickly lures attention with its initial cosmic doodle and acoustic prowess. A gentle strum of guitar is swiftly joined by Maggie’s endearing tones, both essences increasing in poetic persuasion as the song calmly blossoms in depth and temptation. Beyond Pluto is a song which makes no demands yet firmly holds ears as southern bred sighs and floating harmonies also join the lively serenade.

Du Quesne steps forward next, the song more fiery than its predecessor to match the focus of its tale. Guitar and voice again steal attention as the temptress within the track is portrayed, keys providing the suggestive flare of her lure. Stealing the show within the EP, the track is a tantalising encounter quickly followed by the plaintive melodic caresses of Lucky 7, a song which first featured on the 24 hrs album of 2007 and still flirts with ears and imagination as freshly as back then in the EP’s version.

Completed by two remixes of Beyond Pluto by Hifi Sean and Carsten Dusener respectively, the Scarlet Fantastic EP is a magnetic escape from the raw roar of the day; a gentle escape to relax into with ease.

The Beyond Pluto EP is released September 23rd on Dirtbag Baby Records via Right Track/Universal and available from most online stores.

https://www.facebook.com/scarletfantasticofficial/   https://twitter.com/ScarletFantast  http://www.scarlet-fantastic.co.uk/

Pete RingMaster 23/09/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

The Ellipsis – Cold Cactus

the-ellipsis-pic-5_RingMasterReview

Earning plenty of praise and support for their debut EP Mind In The Sky earlier this year, and especially its dynamic single Wasted Potential Me, British rockers The Ellipsis look like repeating that success with new single Cold Cactus. A lively and meaty slice of pop rock, the song grabs ears and attention with ease; teasing with familiar spices before casting its own character of sound and imagination for just over three minutes of highly enjoyable distraction.

Since forming in 2013, The Ellipsis has played the length of the UK and graced numerous festivals including recently opening The Godiva Festival in their home-town of Coventry. Their first single White Feather caught ears and radio attention with the band sparking just as potent interest through an energetic live show which soon led the band to headlining Coventry OxJam in front of 30,000 rugby fans at the Ricoh Arena. The Mind In The Sky EP and its lead track subsequently whipped up a new swell of fans which it is very easy to see Cold Cactus matching.

About someone feeling out of place, physically and emotionally, Cold Cactus instantly grips ears with a guitar lure reminding very much of Billy Talent, that pleasing bait reinforced by the throbbing tone of Harry Green’s bass and the melody draped riffs from lead guitarist John Connearn and rhythm guitarist Henry Bristow. Framed and punctuated by the swinging beats of Alex Bonsor, the song quickly slips into its own individual guise led by the expressive and potent vocals of Bristow. Further melodic colour soon spreads from Connearn’s strings and enterprise, providing a bubbling tempting within the muscular and richly infectious proposition filling and thrilling ears.

As with Wasted Potential Me, its successor has ears and imagination roused but Cold Cactus simply has richer substance and uniqueness to its roar; a sure sign that the band’s songwriting and sound is evolving rather nicely.

Cold Cactus is out now.

UPCOMING LIVE DATES:

16th Sept – Warwick Uni (supporting The Bluetones)

1st Oct – Grosvenor Casino Coventry

14th Oct – Copenhagen (details tba)

29th Oct – Queens Hall Nuneaton

https://www.facebook.com/theellipsisuk/    https://twitter.com/TheEllipsisUK

http://theellipsis.co.uk/

Check out the video for Cold Cactus @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/video-selector/

Pete RingMaster 14/09/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Astral Cloud Ashes – Too Close to the Noise Floor

Album Art_RingMasterReview

With three attention grabbing and imagination sparking singles under the belt, Astral Cloud Ashes unveil debut album Too Close to the Noise Floor. It is a collection of songs which arouse and serenade the senses, often simultaneously as the project’s mesmeric songwriting and emotive melodic elegance seduces.

Astral Cloud Ashes is the new project of Jersey bred songwriter/musician Antony Walker, previously better known as one half of the Channel Islands hailing Select All Delete Save As. Having already created music under the name ALPA, amongst other monikers, Walker quickly sparked attention to his latest project last year with first single Too Close To The Noise Floor, the now title track to the new album. Primarily a solo project but with backing vocalist Jason Neil a permanent fixture in the band, Astral Cloud Ashes draws on inspirations ranging from The Cure, Bloc Party, Interpol, At the Drive In, Mars Volta, and Say Anything as well as flavours bred in indie and alternative rock/pop. Equally though, the album shows bold ventures into more progressive and post rock pastures without losing the instinctive catchiness and melodic romancing found in those earlier propositions.

Mixed across its tracks by Gareth [The Fold], Edd HartwellPaul Miles, Daniel Szanto,  and Walker himself, with the mastering undertaken by Tim Turan, Too Close to the Noise Floor opens with The Man I Had To Become. Instantly a temptation of bubbling guitar captures ears, the coaxing quickly joined by a wave of rhythmic jabbing and a thicker weave of melodic guitar and harmonious vocals. It is a gentle yet boisterous affair easily whipping up the imagination and spirit with Walker’s distinctive tones the mellow flame within a more combustible web of enterprise. It is a great mix which marked those early singles but already seems to have blossomed within the album into a more adventurous and confident entangling of the listener.

The great start is followed by the album’s title track, Too Close to the Noise Floor showing a rawer, more imposing energy as it takes the imagination into the intimacy and adventure of cosmonautics but equally involves “family values and unwanted first-world paranoia” in its energetically hugged theme. Punching its rhythmic and contagious essences home, it also carries a hazy climate to its atmosphere with the bass a deliciously throaty lure amongst nothing but virulent temptation. Embracing a XTC feel and Melvins like revelry, the track has body and appetite eagerly involved in swift time.

Grateful for the Ghost In Our House steps forward next and as the last track showed a more formidable presence to its predecessor, this song reveals a fiercer predation to its opening and subsequent invention within another wash of suggestive melodies and smouldering dynamics. Though not in the actual sound, it is easy to see where an influence of The Cure comes into play, Walker creating an emotional and musical drama which has the senses riding a roller coaster.

Recent single Get Real follows, strolling along with the ever present catchiness which Walker conjures with seeming ease across every track. Guitars pop and bubble throughout the song as rhythmic tenacity creating an anthemic frame to the vocal and melodic ingenuity before Flashback takes over. A calmer and mellower engagement but even more emotively forceful, the song caresses ears with a lone guitar melody before being joined by a heavily shadowed bassline aligned to a broader floating melodic enterprise. Vocally, Walker provides an introspective narrative as provocative as the poetic almost volcanic fuzziness of his guitar. Adding another individual shade and hue to the album, the track shows the broader landscape of Walker’s songwriting and an intimacy, whether personal or observational, which fuels his words.

With drummer Max Saidi guesting, Avant Blah! strolls boldly in next, its lo-fi pop ‘n’ roll blending Weezer infection with Pavement-esque invention while its successor Lites almost lumbers into view in comparison with the brooding bass and irritable riffs to the fore. In all songs there is a great repetitious quality brewed by Walker, here almost coming over drone like to great effect around the solemn melody and the similarly melancholic vocals. As it expands though, a wave of rich textures and rousing energies flood the song, returning throughout the low-key yet thickly enjoyable, almost imposing encounter.

The excellent This Once Great Place has an air of The Cure again with its atmospheric landscape, reminding of the A Forest/Pornography era of the trio across its own captivating journey before the equally impressive Housing in a Bubble makes a grab for best track with its more punkish/grungy roar of sound. Everything about it has a snarl not heard on the album previously; revealing more of the diversity the release carries whilst stirring up a fresh greed in ears and pleasure.

Our Holiday brings Too Close to the Noise Floor to a sombre and enthralling close, the track initially a dark sigh but soon building its own catchy canter loaded with spiky hooks and spicy melodies around another slightly foreboding and compelling bassline. Once more thoughts of Robert Smith and co are sparked but again as a flavour in something individual to Astral Cloud Ashes. It is a riveting end to a striking and increasingly impressive first album from Walker.

The clues to the project’s potential were there in its first trio of singles, and now confirmed and partly realised by Too Close to the Noise Floor. The feeling is that there is plenty more to come and to be explored within that promise, and going by the strength of this thoroughly enjoyable offering, we are all in for many treats ahead.

Too Close to the Noise Floor is released July 11th @ http://apple.co/1RFvoL8

https://www.facebook.com/astralcloudashes   https://astralcloudashes.bandcamp.com/   https://twitter.com/AstralCloudAsh

Pete RingMaster 08/07/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Infectious roars: talking Rosedale with founder Mike Liorti.

Rosedale_RingMasterReview

The brainchild of Torontonian Mike Liorti, Rosedale is an aggressive pop band which commands attention. Formed in 1989, the band has moved and evolved through numerous personnel and situations, all the time Mike honing the sound and imagination which has lured potent praise to EPs and albums. With thanks to Mike we recently explored deeper into the world and body of Rosedale…

Hello Mike and thanks for talking with us.

Can you first introduce the band and give us some background to how it all started?

Thanks for having me. Rosedale is currently just me. I have different members all over the place but I’ve been solo for almost 5 years.

Have you been involved in other bands before? If so has that had any impact on what you are doing now, in maybe inspiring a change of style or direction?

I’ve produced, managed, and played keys/lead guitar for my friend Alex Baker. We recorded his album January Blues in 14 hours and toured it for a couple months. He’s an incredible artist and has definitely influenced me to keep it simple. I also filled in on guitar/guest vocals for a couple bands that played as my band such as Time and Distance (Charleston, WV) and Your Favorite Coastline (Virginia Beach). Both were very fun experiences. I programmed some FX and lights into their back tracks for fun. And they both taught me a lot about writing even before I played for them and I was just a fan. I also sang vocals on a Disney musical called Radio Rebel. I sing all the vocals for the GGGG’s character, Atticus Mitchell.

What inspired the band name?

The band name came from a street that was on our way to the local music store, L&M. We would walk to that music store almost every day and write songs on their awesome gear. We ended up becoming friends with all the employees and recorded with some of them. So that store and the walks to it represent our roots and where we came from. Still, to this day, I’ve met some of my musicians while checking out music stores, taught parts and sold gear to people in music stores, and we often get people saying “I feel like I walked into the lighting room at Guitar Center” as we’re about to start our set. So it’s safe to say I’ve always been the store rat. And it’s taught me more than a college degree would have.

rosedale2Was there a specific idea behind the forming of the band and also in what you wanted it and your sound to offer?

Initially we were very influenced by our local heroes, Moneen. The Used and Boxcar Racer/Blink 182 were also up there on our direction list, but every time we hit the clean channel, it was for Moneen. We were about growing pains and dreams to leave our home town (very original…) As everyone sort of fizzled out into real life and new bands, I migrated the message of Rosedale to more of a motivational message to stay focused on your dreams, show the world what you’re made of, be grateful for what you have, and never give up.

Do the same things still drive the project when it was fresh-faced or have they evolved over time?

They’ve definitely evolved over time, especially with new members coming in for tours. I try to take titbits of their influences into the parts/intros/endings so they have a little more fun every night and it keeps things fresh for me. And I definitely still enjoy playing old songs and putting a twist on them. Right now we’re doing an 8 minute “anniversary version” of our 2006 single you’ll count to Ten (for whatever ten people care) which I just now realized has some serious irony in the title.

Since your early days, how would you say your sound has evolved? Has it seen more of an organic movement of sound or more deliberate intent to try new things?

Rosedale’s sound has definitely matured into more of a listenable aggressive pop. We no longer put our amps on 11 and sing/yell from our throats the whole set. But there’s definitely a lot more raw passion and expression on stage and in the recordings so it’s overall much more authentic. There’s also a lot more orchestration and traditional symphony/big band instruments in the tracks now- big choir vocals too. That evolution just sort of came naturally through my classical upbringing and appreciation for classic movie score composers like John Williams and Hans Zimmer. I just figured ‘hey nobody has really mixed that with punk rock’ and it’s made some cool songs. It takes a lot of time to score them out and program them to sound realistic but it’s a really rewarding process to hear them back.

Are there any in particular inspirations which have added colour to not only on the band’s music but your personal approach and ideas to creating and playing music?

There are definitely influences all over the place in my music and approach on life (Some more surprising than others). You might not think Lil’ Wayne has a strong influence on the decisions I make, but he does. I don’t smoke or drink syrup, but I often think “what would Weezy do?” whenever I feel like closing up shop early after a long day in the studio. I watched a documentary on how Michael Jordan switched from basketball to baseball and I was just as inspired to work on my show from it as I was from seeing an Angels & Airwaves concert. So influences are drawn from everywhere for me. If it sounds good to me, I’ll roll with it, if it has meaning to my life, I’ll write about it.

Is there a general process to your songwriting?

My process is No Process. I like to change it up every time I write a song and challenge myself. If I started writing on piano last song, the next one I might write on guitar, or uke, or acoustic, or just a pad. If I was using pro-tools to demo it out, I’ll try Logic or ableton or Reason for the next demo. If I just finished a sad song, next one is gunna be happy; slow song, fast song etc. The last thing I would ever want Rosedale to be is a recipe that has every song on the album sounding the same…as much as that works for bands these days.

Where do you, more often than not, draw the inspirations to the lyrical side of your songs?

I just write. Personal life memories, something that is on my mind a lot, whatever the chords/song reminds me of. I try not to decide what I’m gunna write about before writing a song. I usually just dive into it, even if there’s no music yet, and realize what I’m writing about once there are a few lines down.

Give us some background to your latest release.

Rosedale was released February 2016 and is a self-titled release because it’s basically all about Rosedale; where it all started, my personal story, why I am who I am, and the struggles I currently face. I recorded it at the studio that mentored me into the recording world, Drive Studios in Woodbridge Ontario. I’ve been good friends with Steve Rizun for the past few years and knew that studio inside-out so it made perfect sense to do the album there. It’s every control freak’s dream to have the key to the studio and I was like a kid in a candy store. 14 hour days flew by in that place.

Give us some insight to the themes and premise behind its songs.rosedale_RingMasterReview

The on-going theme, naturally, is to do what you love and never give up. Sacrifice everything else for the one thing you truly wanna do with your life.

Do you go into the studio with songs pretty much in their final state or prefer to develop them as you record?

A little bit of both. I do like going into a studio with all the ideas mapped out and just replacing the tracks with better tones/takes. But sometimes I’ll just have a couple tracks and a tempo laid out and say “I’m saving this one for the studio…I wanna get crazy with this one”.

Tell us about the live side to the band.

We have a programmed light show and a bunch of automation on our mics to make it sound like (and sometimes bigger than) the record. We also bring our own fog machine. It helps make every show epic and works well with our music. Whenever I think “man, I set all this stuff up for nothing” I’ll see someone taking a picture or video and lose all regret.

It is not easy for any new band to make an impact regionally let alone nationally and further afield. How have you found it your neck of the woods? Are there the opportunities to make a mark if the drive is there?

Toronto is very tough to have as your home base. I rarely play it because it’s always such a let-down seeing everyone bail last minute. [With] most Canada shows that seems to be the case for some reason; like you have to create a big buzz elsewhere before your hometown cares about you again. I wish all it took was good music. The best place for music is Germany/Austria. Anywhere where German is the main language, good music prospers. I hear the same thing about Japan too but I’ve never been there myself.

How has the internet and social media impacted on the band to date? Do you see it as something destined to become a negative from a positive as the band grows and hopefully gets increasing success or is it more that bands struggling with it are lacking the knowledge and desire to keep it working to their advantage?

The internet and social media should be much more useful than it actually is. Contemporary social media has ruined music, straight up. It’s the independent musician’s worst enemy. It was great in the MySpace days but now, thanks to the corporate sharks taking over, it’s just one big useless distraction polluting everyone’s common sense. Will it ever be useful/free again? One can only hope. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of positive things that social media is to thank for, like connecting with new fans personally has never been easier! But overall it’s just become one big cess pool of gimmicks, memes, vented personal matters, and ads.

Once again a big thanks for sharing time with us; anything you would like to add or reveal for the readers?

Keep your stick on the ice.

https://www.facebook.com/ROSEDALEmusic   http://www.rosedalemusic.net/

Pete RingMaster

The Ringmaster Review 01/07/2016

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Creative espionage and inventive intimation: an interview with Aiming For Enrike

 

Photo: Marius Mada Dale

Photo: Marius Mada Dale

Without doubt, one of the year’s most exhilarating and inventive propositions has been Segway Nation, the new album from Norwegian duo Aiming For Enrike. The encounter is a fascinating instrumental adventure in sound and captivating aural suggestiveness; a multi-flavoured infectiousness created by drummer Tobias Ørnes and guitarist Simen Følstad Nilsen. Offered the chance to learn more with the duo, we set about discovering the creative heart of band and album.

Hello and thanks for taking time out to talk with us.

First of all can you tell us about yourselves as individuals?

We are two quite calm persons; a guitar player and drummer. We love making and playing music, so we spend a lot of time in the rehearsal space, practicing, jamming, and composing.

When did you first meet and what sparked the idea to form the band?

We met in 2010, when we attended a music school in Oslo. We were both into experimental noise rock music. After seeing some mind-blowing bands like Monolithic and Zu, we wanted to do something like that as a duo. By using loops we managed to get a huge sound even though we were only two. In the beginning we had more of a noise/prog sound but over the years the songs developed into more conventional song structures where we have incorporated a lot of influences from electronica, funk etc.

Is there a specific meaning behind the band name?

Yes, but not worth sharing 😉

Photo © Haakon Borg / Magpie

Photo © Haakon Borg / Magpie

It is wonderfully difficult to pin down the Aiming For Enrike sound for us, how would you describe it to newcomers to the band?

It’s an adventurous band with good melodies, cool grooves, and lots of energy. It has a very distinct sound, but still the music can go in many different directions.

What and who have most inspired your musical ideas and subsequently sound would you say?

Our sound is kind of schizophrenic and has a lot of layers because of a wide range of influences. Of course we can be inspired by other things in life, but I think it is only music and music gear that have a direct influence to our sound. Aiming for Enrike is the result of two people and sounds like something none of us would have made by ourselves.

Here are some names: Miles Davis, Josh Homme, James Brown, Nels Cline, Radiohead, Sonic Youth, Greg Saunier, Hot Snakes, Glen Branca, Mike Patton, Moha…

I am no expert on the broad expanse of the Norwegian music scene right now, generally coming across the diversity of metal and rock bands from there, but I get the feeling that your music is a one of a kind there; something unusual to the Norwegian landscape of sound. Is that the reality and if so how have they taken to it?

In Norway it is very common to have musical collaborations across genres. If you look at the jazz and improvisational music scene, you have lots of artist who play music that have more in common with pop, rock/metal, electronic music than traditional jazz. In jazz festivals you can go and see pop acts, and in commercial festivals there are jazz bands playing. So I think in general people are very open to new stuff.  Most artists are not so focused on sounding like the other one. It is a good thing to be original, and have your own thing going. We don’t know of any other Norwegian band that sounds like us but way more people than we would have guessed have been positive and open to it.

You have just released new album, Segway Nation; a release which had our imagination as busy and enthralled as ears and feet. Where does a ‘typical’ Aiming For Enrike song start composing wise?

We always start by just playing. We spend a lot of time just improvising, or trying out different kind of ideas. It is important that we are inspired when we play, and that there is a fun factor. We try to follow our intuition, and not doubt our choices too much. Then we record our ideas and make tunes out of them.

Throughout the album, there is an organic freedom, almost as things were created, played, and improvised in the moment. Tell us about the recording of Segway Nation; were songs already AimingForEnrike-SegwayNation_RingMasterReview2400written before recording them or was there an element of conjuring twists and turns there and then?

Everything is played live in the studio, without any click track. That might create a more «free» or improvised feel. On Segway Nation we composed all the songs before we recorded them, but there are some parts in the songs where we improvise. It can be open sections, or written parts played in different ways. That keeps it interesting for us, and hopefully for the listeners. Some of the more «free form» songs like Minitrue and Phone Phobia are the result of some improvised recording sessions.

Another great aspect to the album is the way it inspires the listener’s imagination to create its own adventures. Can you tell us about some of the actual themes and inspirations to the tracks and their suggestive dramas?

We didn’t have any specific plans for this. But it is a good thing if the listeners make up their own adventure in the music. I don’t think there are any specific themes to the songs, but there are specific inspirations to some of the songs. It can be a groove, melody, riff etc.

The past few years has seen some impressive and ear striking duos emerge with varying styles and dynamics within their union. Often it seems that the slimness of personnel allows a band to bring its live presence much more easily to recordings. It is the same with you guys; there is a feeling that listening to Segway Nation would be like standing in front of you on stage. Do you think there is some validity in that thought from your perspective; less bodies and minds leads to less of a leaning on technology and tricks when recording music?

There is more space in the music when you are a duo, and that makes it easier to follow your intuition and play in the moment. Since we record our music live in a room, the recording becomes very representative for us as a band. There are very few options sound wise with only a guitar and a drum kit, so I think it is hard to lose the live feeling in the recording.

Marius Mada Dale

Marius Mada Dale

Tell us about your live side; how you translate the dynamics of songs to the stage?

It works really great! We played the songs live many times before we recorded them. So the recording is not much different from a live performance. With the live performance you will also get the visual aspect and a bit more playful approach to the material.

What is next for Aiming For Enrike now that the album is out and earning acclaim and new hearts?

We are working on new material, which is turning out really good! And we have some festivals coming up this summer; first there´s Nattjazz festival in Bergen, then Øya festival in Oslo. We are planning a European tour in the fall! So lots of cool stuff coming up!

Once again many thanks for giving your time to us. Anything you would like to add?

Check out our album Segway Nation, and also the live in Rohdos garage videos on YouTube.

Read the review for Segway Nation @ https://ringmasterreviewintroduces.wordpress.com/2016/05/06/aiming-for-enrike-segway-nation/

https://www.facebook.com/aimingforenrike    http://www.namemusic.no/aimingforenrike/

Pete RingMaster

The RingMaster Review 04/06/2016

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